The Delusion Mouse Trap



Many many years ago a Carleton Place child named Annie stuck a Plaster of Paris mouse on teacher Miss Sinclair’s skirt. There was quite a commotion when one of the pupils said:

“There’s a mouse on your dress Miss Sinclair!”

Off to the one of the local stores did Miss Sinclair go just to make sure a live one did not enter the classroom. In the Carleton Place Herald it was reported that the two-room mouse trap had quite a run for a few years. When tripped Mr. Mousie was choked to death.

Have you ever heard of the Delusion Mouse Trap?
Did you know the Lanark & District Museum actually has one? Drop by and check it out on your way through Lanark.



Carleton Place’s First School House

1825- A school house at Carleton Place is said to have been established in 1825 near the corner of Bridge Street and the Town Line Road, with James Kent as teacher. Legislative provision for schools for the district was made by the provincial Parliament in 1823. This building later became the Heathen School.


The Mousetrap

In 1876 Nebraskan John Morris patented the first design for a multi-catch mouse trap that enjoyed great commercial success. Its most innovative feature, widely copied, was a hinged outer door that allowed the trap to function repeatedly before it was emptied.

Basically, the trap that John Morris first developed (fig. 1) consisted of a narrow tunnel, which was shown with a door at each end (though one door only was also an option indicated in the patent description), and which on its side had an animal-holding chamber entered from the center of the tunnel through a one-way door with an overhead hinge. The most important and innovative feature of the trap, which set it apart from all earlier mouse trap designs, was the unique nature of the outer door and the mechanism that closed and reopened it. Each outer door was hinged at its base and opened so as to lie flat along the floor of the tunnel. Beneath the open door lay one end of a seesaw that was pivoted close to the trap entrance, the other end extending into the tunnel and well beyond the end of the horizontal open door. A mouse entering the trap trod first onto the door and then onto the far end of the seesaw. This last move caused the inner end of the seesaw to descend, while the other end was raised and flipped up the door to close the trap. If the mouse then attempted to return, it found itself trapped below the slanting closed door. On the other hand it could step off the end of the seesaw and allow the door to reopen, thereby resetting the trap





About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

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